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A small c catholic

Monk's story gives new reason for death penalty opposition


Arguments against capital punishment come in many forms.

When I was a columnist and editorial writer for The Kansas City Star I would take almost any opportunity to express our editorial board’s long-held opposition to the death penalty by writing impassioned editorials urging citizens not to let their government sink to the moral level of common criminals by killing people to keep them from killing people.

Sorting through kid's technology use tough for grandparents


The oldest of my six grandchildren just turned 9. What a stunning child: Smart, curious, beautiful, creative, obedient, compassionate.

Which is why I worry about her and my five other grandkids, my descriptions of whom would include many of the same words that describe Olivia. But my worry is not overwhelming, partly because she’s surrounded by people who are models for her and who can teach her right from wrong.

Christians must play a pivotal role in conflict mediation


When I was a boy of almost 13, I went with my family to Jerusalem, which at the time (late 1957) was divided between Israel and Jordan.

We had to stay on the Jordanian side because next we were headed to Egypt, and that country wouldn’t allow us to enter if we were coming from Israel, with which it had no diplomatic relations and no intentions of ever having them.

Faith should guide in all aspects of life, including politics


The morning of the walk dawned crisp and spectacular, and our team collected in a church parking lot near the start.

More than 20 members of our congregation gathered with about 3,500 others for AIDSWalk 2011, the annual event that raises funds for the AIDS Service Foundation of Greater Kansas City. Through our own donations and the pledges of others -- mostly gathered by our AIDS Ministry from other church members -- our team turned in nearly $4,000 to the cause.

Hospitals, Alice's Wonderland, and the bishops on health care


The Web site of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops devotes lots of attention to health care. As it should.

But my own recent personal experience with our health care system makes me think the bishops -- and all American religious leaders -- might do well first to insist that the system be built on rigorous honesty instead of relying on the incomprehensible money games that now seem to characterize it -- games a friend who serves as CEO of a major health care non-profit agency tells me are “absurd.”


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